We are half way through the summer, but some of the hottest Chicago months are still ahead.

Warmer months usually mean all types of outdoor activities. Whether you’re at the beach on vacation or simply running errands with the stroller, summer weather can put children at a higher risk when out-and-about.

At South Loop Montessori School, we like to remind everyone of a few things they can do to make sure kids are safe and having fun – check out these tips:

  • Sun Protection: Even though the warmth of the sun is something we anxiously await all winter, no one can deny the damaging effects that can come with it. For children and especially infants, the best line of defense is to avoid exposure to the sun by simply covering up. Wearing a hat can do wonders for protecting your child’s face from harmful ultraviolet radiation, not to mention everyone loves a baby in a hat! Limiting sun exposure during peak hours — between 10am and 4pm — or taking advantage of shady spaces are helpful. Be sure to apply sunscreen with at least an SPF of 15 or greater, even on cloudy days, and reapply every two hours.
  • Stay Hydrated: With the warmer temperatures, it can be difficult for your little ones to regulate their own body temperature; in fact, small children and infants are not able to regulate in the same way adults do. Make sure children are drinking fluids often enough that they do not feel thirsty, especially on days with outdoor physical activity. If children are active outdoors, breaks should be taken every 20 minutes to rehydrate.
  • Repel Insects: Arguably the most annoying part about summer are those pesky mosquitos. Along with the sun and fun, unfortunately we must also be on the defense against bites from mosquitoes, ticks, fleas and other bothersome bugs. When looking to repel bugs, it is important to decide if using repellents containing DEET is an option for your family. If yes, please use sparingly on young children and never on infants. On older children, look for repellents with no more than 10-30 percent of DEET for use on body and clothing, but not hands and face. More natural options include repellents containing picaridin or oil from lemon-eucalyptus. These non-toxic options are just as effective in repelling insects from your summer time fun!

As always, we hope your family enjoys a fun, safe and memorable summer!